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September 1, 2014
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William Volk's Blog   Expert Blogs

 

William Volk is currently the co-founder and CCO of PlayScreen, LLC  and a avid cyclist.  He attended the University of Pennsylvania and did graduate work at the Universities of Maryland and New Hampshire ... earning degrees in Physics, Astronomy and Computer Engineering.
In college Mr. Volk participated on the cycling team, a passion that continues to this day.

Volk began his game career in 1979, on the launch team of the computer game division of Avalon Hill, now a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc.  He authored the Avalon Hill Games Conflict 2500, Voyager 1, and Controller (Air Traffic Control Game).

In 1995 Mr. Volk co-founded Aegis Development, a pioneering firm in the area of multimedia and digital video production. At Aegis, he served as the VP of Development and oversaw the development of some of the first animation and video titling systems for personal computers. Mr. Volk also designed and programmed Aegis Draw and Draw Pro. 

Volk served as the Vice President of Technology at Activision, Inc. where he was responsible for the development of the first CD-ROM entertainment project, The Manhole™, and the ‘discovery’ of the product’s talented authors, Rand and Robyn Miller, both of whom would become the creators of the best selling CD-ROM Myst™.  Volk created the products that secured Activision’s success, including the highly acclaimed Return to Zork™.     

At Lightspan, Inc (a leading educational software company) as chief technologist of gaming technology, Volk managed the programming and Q&A groups. His team produced more than 110 titles for the Sony Playstation.  

Volk was co-founder and CTO of Save.com where he and his team developed the first bar coded print-at-home grocery coupons available on the Internet. His understanding of the technology, security and interface issues was critical to Save.com’s successful launch in 1999.

Volk founded ZipProof in 2000, a soft proofing and collaborative software firm used by Print Shops from Colorado to Chile.  

Prior to co-founding PlayScreen, Volk served as CEO of Bonus Mobile Entertainment and co-designed the social mobile game "The Dozens" inspired by the Wayans Brothers card game.

PlayScreen is a leading publisher of iPhone, Google Android and Social Network games.

More here: gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=13563

 

Expert Blogs

Posted by William Volk on Tue, 12 Mar 2013 03:08:00 EDT in Business/Marketing, Smartphone/Tablet
Moving beyond just product-placement, banners, or sponsorship ... brands are using games to engage players with the products and the company. I present a recent example of this with the use of a mobile crossword-style game to engage Ford customers.


Posted by William Volk on Tue, 08 Jan 2013 06:55:00 EST in Design, Smartphone/Tablet
When we set out to create Word Carnivale, we wanted to go beyond the typical "find words from a fixed block of letters." Here's what we did.


Posted by William Volk on Wed, 19 Dec 2012 02:19:00 EST in Design, Smartphone/Tablet
Sunday was my birthday, also marks 1/3 of a Century in the game business. One "birthday surprise" was a flame-o-gram about Violent Games.


Posted by William Volk on Thu, 22 Nov 2012 06:39:00 EST in Design, Smartphone/Tablet
How we designed a word game for iOS with #1 potential.


Posted by William Volk on Mon, 12 Nov 2012 12:09:00 EST in Design, Smartphone/Tablet
How do you know when you have a game that really IS going to be a hit on the iPhone? In reference to Babe Ruth's famous "Called Shot" in in the fifth inning of Game 3 of the 1932 World Series, I ponder if I should Call The Shot on a iOS game.


Posted by William Volk on Tue, 18 Sep 2012 11:54:00 EDT in
Reinventing Crickler with a Long Tail Approach. How we met the demand for a wide range of crossword puzzle topics.



William Volk's Comments

Comment In: [Blog - 08/22/2014 - 10:24]

I 've seen a situation ...

I 've seen a situation where the 'seasoned ' guy would be reporting to someone with only a few years of experience, and what 's more ... someone who 's making BIG MISTAKES. r n r nMy advice to the seasoned guy Don 't say anything during interviews about the ...

Comment In: [Blog - 08/07/2014 - 03:02]

First off, thank you for ...

First off, thank you for writing this. Most of what we see in the press are the successes, and the truth is that in mobile ... these are outlers. This survivor bias drives people to make irrational projections and leads to exactly the situation we have in mobile gaming today. ...

Comment In: [Blog - 08/20/2013 - 12:00]

As to CD-I, I may ...

As to CD-I, I may be one of the few who knows why in heck Nintendo licensed Zelda to the platform. :- r n r nWikipedia doesn 't have the real answer.

Comment In: [Blog - 07/31/2013 - 05:13]

Everything in this blog is ...

Everything in this blog is good and true, but the one thing left out is that we 're talking Lottery-sized odds here. For everyone of these examples, there are 1000 's of devs who put out high quality stuff that just didn 't catch fire. r n r nJust like ...

Comment In: [Blog - 10/26/2011 - 01:53]

Puzzle and Dragons 3.5m a ...

Puzzle and Dragons 3.5m a day shows the lost opportunity here, with Pokemon specifically.

Comment In: [Feature - 04/05/2013 - 04:00]

Monkey Island is my favorite ...

Monkey Island is my favorite adventure game of all time. r n r nIt inspired me.